Vermont House delays Marijuana Legalization Bill

Posted by Sagar Satapathy on May 03, 2016.

In a big jolt to pro-marijuana activists, the Vermont House has delayed until Tuesday a vote on compromise legislation calling for expanded decriminalization. The bill was approved by the Senate, allowing possession of up to an ounce of marijuana in the state. the bill was on House agenda for debate Monday, but the lawmakers decided to defer it till Tuesday.

The proposal sought to replace criminal penalties with fines akin to a traffic ticket for possession of up to 2 ounces and cultivation of up to two plants. However, it looks quiet uncertain that the House would give its approval to the bill.

The bill would not legalize retail sales of marijuana, as approved by the Senate. Rather, a compromise formula has been reached to allow growing of up to two marijuana plants at home. In addition, possession of marijuana has been increased to 2 ounces from 1.

The House has, however passed a separate measure, expanding the medical marijuana bill to cover patients with glaucoma and chronic pain. It also expands the law to cover patients with glaucoma, an eye disorder.

While the above measure was approved on 133-13 votes, it's very unlikely that marijuana legalization bill would get the majority in the 150-member Vermont House. The Vermont lawmakers might be willing to discuss the issue further, but could stop short of legalization.

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